Here's eight activewear brands that you need to know for 2016.

It's nonsense to think that you'll honor every New Year's resolution you made this weekend. Forget commitments to eat better (or less),  or stress less. Instead find a task that will help you balance your life without having to sacrifice enjoying the foods you love. And stress reduction? That can be accomplished through the same activities that allow you to consume what you want: working out.

Wellness and an active life are two of the hottest topics today. Men (and women) all over the world are coming together to support healthy living and workouts that drive the betterment of self. And while every New Year brings a desire to focus on wellness, there are great brands in 2016 that will help get you there without looking like a workout schlep.

In our first guide of the year, we focus on activewear brands that are driving change in the activewear garment business. Each brand here is delivering a new, modern approach to sportswear that embodies independence and good looks.


SOAR is a fairly new running brand from UK designer Tim Soar. The line is focused on building functional activewear using Europe and Japan-sourced materials of the highest grade. We ran most of October in SOAR and fell in love with its "Three Season Shorts." Highly recommended.

Ten Thousand

Ten Thousand is another great upstart from 2015. The consumer-direct brand makes well-tailored workout gear that, "isn’t designed to make you stand out in a crowd, and it’s not designed for post-workout selfies." Simply put, Ten Thousand is subtle sportswear that makes one shirt and one short, both in black. We ran and did a ton of spin classes in Ten Thousand all of December - good stuff.

Outdoor Voices

This is activewear without big logos or egos: meet Outdoor Voices. The New York-based label prides itself on a laid-back attitude that promotes playful "recreation" instead of pumping iron. OV has garnered a lot of attention from the fashion crowd and just received a big investment from A.P.C. We're excited to see some collab product this spring.


This is what happens when activewear goes fashion forward. After being turned off by most workout gear that's "too active," founder Jordan Schiff created DUSK to reflect his taste. The range features technical items like compression running shorts and leggings mixed with flannel shirting for a unique layering element. DUSK debuted this fall at Unis, a very fitting partner.

State Concepts 

Direct-to-consumer imprint Frank & Oak launched State Concepts with the goal to bring the active community online. Look for streamlined tech-driven garments like running shorts, sweats, and even puffer coats -- all for a pretty hard to beat price.

AETHER Apparel

AETHER Apparel should be familiar to anyone reading Selectism; we've been covering the West Coast-based brand for ages. Those in the know will be familiar with the fantastic outerwear (they make our favorite raincoat of all time), but you may not know about AETHER's "Pieced Active T-Shirt". It's sold as a cycling top, but we love for all active occasions.

EFM (Engineered for Motion) Menswear 

First covered here in March, Engineered for Motion (EFM), like AETHER, focuses on high-quality construction and tailoring, but differs quite drastically in aesthetic approach. We like EFM's future-facing approach to activewear, and especially like the design of its "Union Reversible Shirt." It's quite an expensive garment at $795 and certainly not for all budgets, but still worth a look.

Brooks Running

While Nike and adidas may have the lifestyle running shoe market on lock, real runners will praise the work of Brooks Sports. The Seattle via Philadelphia company produces arguably the best running shoes on the market. Problem is they're not always so pretty. But where Brooks lacks in looks, it gives back wholly in performance and ride. We switched to Brooks running sneakers in 2015 and have never looked back.

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